Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Chinese Roast Pork

Yup, it's about time I write about a Chinese recipe. I wished I could tell you that I cook Chinese food all the time, but the truth is that I don't. Unlike most American meals, Chinese meals are prepared in a labor-intensive manner. Most dishes are made in a wok, not in an oven. Take fried rice...you can't cook it in an oven; you have to slave over prepping and cooking it in a wok.

This roast pork (called "cha siu" in Cantonese) recipe for the home cook is one of those rare non-labor intensive Chinese dishes. I generally don't like cha siu in the States. If you have ever been to Hong Kong, you would know what I'm talking about.

Cha siu is usually served over rice, stuffed in a bun ("cha siu bao") or stuffed in a pastry shell ("cha siu sow"). My mom makes a pretty good cha siu, so when I first tried to make it, I was impressed at how easy it was! All this recipe needs is to sit in the marinade over night, and you can get the marinade at an Asian grocery store. And directions are on the jar! How great is that?

Chinese Roast Pork (Cha Siu)

Pork butt (about an inch thick)
"Char Siu" sauce (don't know why there is a "r"...maybe it's Mandarin. I use Lee Kum Kee brand.)

Pour marinade over pork butt and refrigerate over night. Place in an oven preheated at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. Baste every 10 minutes with a mixture of a quarter part cha siu sauce and to a full part honey. Increase oven temperature to 375 in the last 10 minutes of cooking so the meat would be charred (hence "siu" in Chinese). To serve, slice at about 1/4 inch on the bias.

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